Mikala Gundersen Beats Out Lars Petersen For 2015 Global Festival Money Earnings

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Mikala Gundersen on My Lady, the top money earning rider at Florida's Adequan Global Dressage Festival. © 2015 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Mikala Gundersen on My Lady, the top money earning rider at Florida’s Adequan Global Dressage Festival. © 2015 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 30, 2015–Mikala Gundersen beat out her fellow Florida-based Danish team rider Lars Petersen to finish on top of the 2015 Adequan Global Dressage Festival prize money rankings with earnings of $60,485.

Lars earned $59,860 during the Global circuit of seven CDIs spread over 12 weeks with a total of more than $650,000 in prize money, according to the standings compiled by dressage-news.com and presented by Cunningham & Cunningham Livestock insurance.

Mikala, a resident of Florida for the past decade who was a Danish team mate of Lars at the World Games last summer, was second on the 2014 money list with $42,080 while Lars earned $47,920.

Both ride horses owned by Americans, Janne Rumbough owns My Lady ridden by Mikala and Marcia Pepper owns Mariett that Lars rides.

For the season at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s Stadium complex where dressage is staged, Shelly Francis of neigboring Loxahatchee was the highest placed American and third on the list with $35,385.

Steffen Peters of San Diego, California was in the fifth spot with $28,320 behind Germany’s Christoph Koschel on $29,172.

Canadian team riders Karen Pavicic with $28,115 ranked sixth and Belinda Trussell seventh with $24,460.

Sweden’s top rider Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén filled the eighth slot with $23,400 while José Daniel Martín Dockx who rides for Spain on American-owned horses was the ninth biggest money winner with $20,100.

Lisa Wilcox, an Olympic and World Games medalist for the United States rounded out the top 10 with earnings of $20,040.

Amateur rider Kasey Perry of Orangevale, California took home $18,365 in the 11th spot.

Laura Graves of Geneva, Florida who competed in only three shows–two World Cup qualifiers to earn a start at the Final in Las Vegas in two weeks and the USA 1 team that won Nations Cup gold, collected $17,175.

Spain’s teenage phenom Juan Matute, Jr. who lives in Wellington earned $14,405 to fill the 14th position.

Overall, at least 60 riders in divisions ranging from Juniors to Grand Prix and including amateurs earned at least $1,000, with 18 riders winning more than $10,000.

The prize money, highest in the world outside championships, has helped revolutionize the sport in North America as riders say it makes possible participation in top dressage competitions on both sides of the Atlantic. Coupled with some of the finest competition facilities in the world, seven international events in Wellington that itself is a lifestyle destination the circuit repeatedly set records for entries through to the finale week this year.

Riders from more than 15 nations as widely separated as Australia to Armenia to Venezuela and Olympic and world championship medalists from a half dozen countries on both sides of the Atlantic shared in the prize money pool.

Both Mikala and Lars will use the money to fly their horses to the World Cup Final–they get no help under the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) rules–and Mikala plans to seek a place on Denmark’s team for the European Championships.

Laura Graves told dressage-news.com she is putting her money toward training with Debbie McDonald while maintaining a small training center at home with her sights set on riding for the United States at the Pan American Games in Toronto in July and the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The Global Dressage Festival prize winning list is compiled by dressage-news.com and is not an official ranking. The list is presented by Cunningham & Cunningham Livestock, an equestrian insurance agency.

RANK RIDER NATION $ (above $1,000 as of Mar. 29, 2015)

1. Mikala Gundersen DEN 60,485
2. Lars Petersen DEN 59,860
3. Shelly Francis USA 35,385
4. Christoph Koschel GER 29,172.50
5. Steffen Peters USA 28,320
6. Karen Pavicic CAN 28,115
7. Belinda Trussell CAN 24,460
8. Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén SWE 23,400
9. José Daniel Martín Dockx ESP 20,100
10. Lisa Wilcox USA 20,040
11. Kasey Perry USA 18,365
12. Laura Graves USA 17,175
13. Charlotte Jorst USA 15,595
14. Juan Matute, Jr. ESP 14,405
15. Kathleen Raine USA 14,000
16. Arlene Page USA 13,890
17. Jacqueline Brooks CAN 13,775
18. Megan Lane CAN 10,940
19. Susan Dutta USA 8,160
20. Chris Von Martels CAN 7,500
21. Catherine Haddad-Staller USA 7,390
22. Allison Brock USA 7,255
23. Kimberly Herslow USA 7,135
24. Kelly Layne AUS 6,770
25. Michael Klimke GER 6,652.50
26. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz USA 6,205
27. Jill Irving CAN 6,145
28. Diane Creech CAN 5,960
29. Tina Irwin CAN 5,155
30. Christilot Boylen CAN 4,465
31. Michael Barisone USA 4,400
32. Katherine Bateson-Chandler 4,320
33. Caroline Darcourt SWE 4,300
34. Katharina Stumpf AUT 3,800
35. Silva Martin USA 3,750
36. Ashley Holzer CAN 3,520
37. Devon Kane USA 3,450
38. Shannon Dueck CAN 3,145
39-T. Carrie Schopf ARM 3,080
39-T. Anna Marek USA 3,080
41.
 Alice Tarjan USA 2,260
42. Lara Griffith GBR 2,240
43. Lauren Sammis USA 2,210
44. Cesar Parra USA 2,140
45. Heather Blitz USA 2,050
46. Janne Rumbough USA 1,880
47. Tina Konyot USA 1,870
48. Sharon McCusker USA 1,850
49. Gabriela Stumpf AUT 1,800
50.
 Adrienne Pot USA 1,730
51. Brittany Fraser CAN 1,660
52. Mary Bahniuk-Lauritsen USA 1,470
53. Chris Hickey USA 1,250
54-T. Laura Tomlinson GBR 1,200
54-T. Sylvia Gugler USA 1,200
56-T. Tanya Strasser-Shostak CAN 1,180
56-T. Barbara Davis USA 1,180
58. Danielle Gallagher-Legriff CAN 1,090
59. Patricia Koschel GER 1,012
60. Chase Hickok USA 1,000